NEW DELHI: As Covid-19 infections continued to inch up, fresh daily cases in the country crossed 500 on Saturday for the first time in 114 days, with the seven-day average having doubled in the last 11 days.
The overall numbers, however, are still relatively low and there has been no rise in deaths from the virus, which were recorded at six in the last seven days.
India reported 524 new cases on Saturday, the highest daily tally since November 18 last year. In the last seven days, 2,671 fresh cases have been recorded, up nearly 50% from the previous seven-days’ total of 1,802. Covid cases have been steadily going up in the country for the past four weeks which is the longest sustained rise in infections since the previous surge of the pandemic in June-July last year.
Maharashtra and the southern states continue to record a bulk of the fresh cases. In the last seven days ending Saturday, three states reported more than 500 new cases – Karnataka (584), Kerala (520) and Maharashtra (512).
Among states that reported at least 100 new cases during this period, Gujarat registered the highest spike in infections. Cases in the state jumped four-fold, from 48 in the previous seven days (February 26-March 4) to 190 in the last seven (March 5-11). Maharashtra registered a 86% spike in the period, Tamil Nadu 67% (224 cases) and Telangana 63% (197 cases).
Cases are inching up in several other states but the weekly numbers there are still below 100. Delhi, for instance, reported 97 fresh cases, up from 72 in the previous seven days.
The seven-day average of daily cases in India has doubled in the last 11 days, going from 193 on February 28 to 382 on March 11. At the beginning of the month, the doubling rate was close to 16, indicating that cases have risen at a faster pace in recent days. The weekly death toll has remained under 10 for some time now. India reported six fatalities each in the last two seven-day periods.